Baldwin man charged with identity theft

BALDWIN — Darrin Christopher Thomas, a 39-year-old Baldwin man, was arraigned in the 78th District Court of White Cloud on one charge of identity theft on Dec. 18.

Thomas was the subject of an investigation that started in August of 2015 through the State, Sheriffs, Chiefs Enforcement Narcotics Team (SSCENT), a multi-jurisdictional task force which serves Manistee, Mason, Oceana and Lake counties.

During the investigation, detectives from SSCENT learned Thomas allegedly used another person’s driver’s license to purchase items commonly used to manufacture methamphetamine.  This crime is alleged to have taken place in Newaygo County.

Thomas is currently lodged in the Lake County Jail on unrelated charges. He was allegedly involved in an incident in September in which he stole a car within Lake County, drove to Newaygo County and kidnapped a woman believed to be a former girlfriend. He was soon confronted by Michigan State Police troopers in Battle Creek and fled back to Lake County after being chased by police.

After several days on the run, Thomas was spotted in Lake County on Sept. 10. Lake County Sheriff’s deputies began searching an area in Pleasant Plains Township using their K-9 unit as well as resources from the Michigan State Police. Thomas was soon found having broken into an unused trailer and was arrested. The kidnapped victim was recovered safely.

He was arraigned on charges of identity theft which is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. It is not currently known what, if any, further legal action the state will take against Thomas.